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How To Cook Perfect Asparagus In The Microwave

Published: May 5, 2019 • 
Last Modified: February 11, 2024
Published: February 11, 2024

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A Neat And Tidy Five-Minute Method

Asparagus season is almost here! Soon, grocery stores will have huge stacks of fresh, perfect asparagus. When it's abundant, it's cheap! Take advantage of the opportunity to indulge when the quality is at its peak and the lowest price.

perfect asparagus

Yes, the beautiful green stalks are incredibly delicious, but they are a nutritional powerhouse, too! You don't need to smother it in a cheesy sauce. Here's a way to eat it naked and enjoy it! (Not you, silly, the asparagus!)

When I was growing up, my mom would occasionally splurge and buy a can of asparagus. It was a luxury for us, and we each got a spear or two.

When I look back, the asparagus was pale and mushy stuff, but Mom acted like it was a treat. So, around that table of six, it always was! She was a clever momma and did her best to broaden our culinary horizons.

Perfect Asparagus Is Fleeting So Love It While You Can

Years later, I was the momma encouraging a love for vegetables. When we moved to the farm, the previous owners had a large, well-established asparagus patch.

So, every spring from April to early June, we gobbled up every tender spear of perfect asparagus we could find. It was such a luxury!

I was always grateful for that little gift Roy and Marie left us at the farm. I'm sure they hated to leave it behind. It takes three years until you can harvest newly planted asparagus.

You can only cut it for about six weeks every spring to keep it producing. It needs time to grow its tall, ferny-looking tops for the rhizomes to recharge for another season.

We left the farm years ago. If I had planted asparagus at our new home, we would have been harvesting our own for several years. Ah, hindsight.

These days, I eagerly scan parking lots along the main drag for the stands of plucky folks who grow and sell this gorgeous vegetable. Sometimes, homegrown asparagus is as thick as my thumb and still tender!

Why You Should Eat As Much Fresh Asparagus As You Can

Spring is tricky in Nebraska. I can't count how often my beautiful tulips have been covered with snow. Spring goes by fast wherever you live, so pick daffodils and eat fresh asparagus while you can!

I give the same advice about sweetcorn season!! The shortest distance and time from farm to table is always the best! The season for the best fresh asparagus is as brief as a junior high romance, so enjoy it!

asparagus and daffodils

My Five-Minute Method For Perfectly Crisp-Tender Spears

I love this method of making asparagus because you don't have to get out an appliance or wash a skillet or roasting pan. It is asparagus in its purest, most simple form.

Asparagus tastes great, looks gorgeous on a plate, and pairs beautifully with springy things like tiny new potatoes or hard-boiled eggs.

We love it alongside salmon or ham. It's simply perfect for Easter dinner! It would look amazing next to my favorite dilled carrots! So here's how you do it!

Wash the asparagus under cold running water. Next, snap off the woody stem end of a pound of fresh asparagus. The magic is when you bend the stalk; it will snap at precisely the spot where it turns from tough to tender.

Lay the stalks in a glass baking dish. I love using glass dishes for so many recipes! Arrange the spears "head to tail," so about half the tips are on one end of the pan and half on the other.

Slice A Lemon Into Thin Circles And Remove The Seeds

Add about a tablespoon of water and arrange the lemon slices on top of the asparagus. Cover the pan with plastic film and microwave for 3-5 minutes.

Check after 3 minutes. If the stalks are easily pierced with a knife tip, it's ready to eat. It's up to you to decide on the perfect level of crispness!

Peel back a corner of the film and drain off the liquid. Now drizzle olive oil, butter, or a little of both over the beautiful green stalks and shake the pan to distribute. Sprinkle with kosher salt and fresh ground pepper if you like. Serve hot.

There's No Such Thing As Leftover Asparagus

Leftovers? No such thing! I always make "plan-overs!" Pour your favorite vinaigrette or Italian dressing over the leftover spears and refrigerate. Delicious, added to a salad, or served with some crusty bread and a little hunk of cheese!

Not long ago, a generous serving of asparagus was center stage on our little "farm food" supper of turkey sausage, scalloped corn, and carrot coins. It gave a simple meal a little class, don't you agree?

Yield: 4 servings

Perfect Fresh Asparagus

fresh asparagus

Perfectly cooked crisp-tender fresh asparagus with a kiss of lemon.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes


  • 1 pound fresh asparagus trimmed
  • 1 lemon thinly sliced
  • 1 Tbsp water
  • 1-2 Tbsp Olive oil
  • 1 tsp kosher salt or to taste


  1. Wash and snap tough ends off asparagus—layer them in a glass baking dish alternating stem ends and tips.
  2. Add one tablespoon of water and lay lemon slices on top.
  3. Cover with plastic film and cook for 3-5 minutes on high in the microwave.
  4. Check after 3 minutes. If the asparagus can be is easily pierced with a skewer, it's ready to eat.
  5. Lift a corner of plastic film and drain off water.
  6. Remove lemon slices and drizzle olive oil over asparagus.
  7. Shake the dish to distribute the olive oil evenly and sprinkle with kosher salt.
  8. Serve lemon with asparagus if desired.

Soon, asparagus will be at its peak of quality and freshness, AND it's at the lowest prices of the year! Now that you know how quick and easy it is to prepare, I hope you'll grab some soon! Cook asparagus this way and use it in this wonderful old egg and asparagus casserole recipe!

I'd love to know how you like to fix asparagus. Have you ever eaten it raw, chopped into a salad?

If you liked this recipe, you are my people! So please share this post on your social media accounts like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest if you enjoyed this recipe today. It would really tickle me, and I'd be ever so grateful; thank you! 

Love, GB (Betty Streff)

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One comment on “How To Cook Perfect Asparagus In The Microwave”

  1. […] When I plated the meal, I spooned some of the sauce over the rice, and it was delicious! Rice pilaf or brown rice would be great, too. A green salad for daughter #2’s family paired very well with it. Another yummy side for daughter #1 and her family was simple, fresh asparagus. […]

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